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Divorce rate dating length

Cultural norms changed in ways that decreased the aversion to being single and increased the probability of cohabitation.Using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79)—a survey of people born during the 1957–1964 period—this study examines the marriage and divorce patterns for a cohort of young baby boomers up to age 46.In addition, marriages of women were more likely to end in divorce, as were marriages that began at younger ages.On average, women married at younger ages than men.Many changes in the last half century have affected marriage and divorce rates.

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For a specific cohort, the NLSY79 can provide statistics on the percentage of marriages that end in divorce. Because the NLSY79 collects data on many aspects of respondents’ lives—including employment, fertility, and income—many researchers have used the NLSY79 to look at marriage in conjunction with a variety of outcomes.About equal proportions of men and women who received a college degree married by age 46, 88 percent for men and 90 percent for women.Men and women who did not complete high school were less likely to marry than were men and women with more education.Stevenson and Wolfers found stark differences in marriage patterns between racial groups and between education groups for the 1950–1955 birth cohort: Blacks married later and at lower rates compared with Whites.College graduates and those with less education married at approximately the same rates, but college graduates married later (at age 24.9 versus age 22.8).The current study differs from Stevenson and Wolfers’ ­­2007 study in that the current study examines a younger birth cohort of Americans.This paper considers differences by gender and by racial/ethnic group but focuses on differences across education groups and by age of marriage.In their 2007 study, Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers used data from the 2001 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to examine marriage and divorce patterns up to age 45 for cohorts born in 1940–19–1955.A comparison of the two cohorts shows that the likelihood of marriage declined, the average age at first marriage increased by 1 year, and married couples were more likely to divorce in the latter cohort.In particular, the study focuses on differences in marriage and divorce patterns by educational attainment and by age at marriage.This work is descriptive and does not attempt to explain causation or why marriage patterns differ across groups.


  1. The Correlation Between Length of Engagement and Divorce by Amy Guertin. Having too long of an engagement has also been correlated with a higher divorce rate.

  2. Dating methods in geology. While couples who are fast to marry are as equally likely to divorce as couples who are slow to marry, Length of Courtship Less Than a Year.

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